Port Elizabeth: April 11 (IANS) South Africa are about to complete a clean sweep against Bangladesh in the two-Test series, cutting the Mominul Haque-led visitors to 27/3 in the second innings on stumps on Day 3 at St George’s Park here .
Bangladesh still needs 386 runs to win, which seems unlikely given that their entire top order, including Tamim Iqbal, Mahmudul Hasan Joy and Najmul Hossain Shanto, returned to the locker room in just 9.1 overs of Bangladesh’s second inning late in the game. Sunday (IST).
Earlier in the day, after bowling Bangladesh for 217 in the first inning, the Proteas batsmen scored quickly to set a target of 413 and the spinners struck in the tricky period of play to put the visitors down on the stumps. on Day 3.
After a delayed start, Mushfiqur Rahim with Yasir Ali held the score, increasing the resistance in the first session. Yasir picked up the momentum for the tourists with three consecutive caps on Lizaad Williams’ first three bowling day balls. The two stood their ground in the crease in the opening hour, trading probing spells from Wiaan Mulder and Duanne Olivier. However, the introduction of spinner Keshav Maharaj worked wonders for South Africa.
The hosts fielded an aggressive field to support Maharaj, who was finding spin and rebounds, forcing a false shot from Yasir after their partnership crossed the 70-run mark. Maharaj gave the ball flight, baffling Yasir in the air and the bowler easily caught the leading edge, meaning Yasir dropped back just four runs short of what would have been his second Test fifty.
In the penultimate over of the first session, the hosts grabbed another important wicket, this time from Rahim, who went down immediately after scoring his 25th Test fifty. After the second session resumed, South Africa needed just 3.2 overs to eliminate the finalists. Simon Harmer chose the wickets of Taijul Islam (5) and Ebadot Hossain (0), while Maharaj fired Mehidy Hasan Miraz for 11 runs.
South Africa pitched the visitors for just 217, giving themselves a 236-run lead before coming to bat in the second inning. Proteas’ opening pair, skipper Dean Elgar and Sarel Erwee, didn’t take long to get going and found limits regularly.
The partnership pushed Proteas’ total past the fifty-run mark in as many deliveries before Elgar (26) lost his wicket in an attempt to sweep Taijul. Keegan Petersen started positively but lost the wicket to him on the tee shot, caught in front of the stumps by Taijul.
Bangladesh struck again on the other side of the break, with Erwee dropping nine runs short of the half-century. 29-run position between Temba Bavuma and Ryan Rickelton steadied the ship before Taijul picked his third wicket to eliminate the latter by 12. While Bavuma was solid at one end, Kyle Verreynne took the attack on bowlers from Bangladesh with 30 balls and 39. Mehidy Hasan Miraz scalped Bavuma to break the partnership and struck again to end Verreynne’s fast tackles. South Africa declared 176/6 after the wicket, giving the Bangladeshi batsmen a difficult period of play to negotiate.
With the launch helping the spinners, South Africa started with Keshav Maharaj and Simon Harmer. The move reaped dividends as Mahmudul Hasan Joy was back in the pavilion for a pair. He then caught Najmul Hossain Shanto on his next turn before Harmer dismissed Tamim Iqbal cold turkey.
Short scores: South Africa 453 and 176/6 decl (Sarel Erwee 41, Kyle Verreynne 39 not out; Taijul Islam 3/67, Mehidy Hasan Miraz 2/34) vs Bangladesh 217 (Tamim Iqbal 47, Mushfiqur Rahim 51, Yasir Ali 46) ; Simon Harmer 3/39, Wiaan Mulder 3/25) and 3/27 (Keshav Maharaj 2/17). Bangladesh needs 386 runs.